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In the not too distant future we may be capable of having images projected into our retina directly from a contact lens. The GUI for our mobile devices could be seen at any time and issued commands allowing the display portion of the device to be eliminated. Combine this with sensors on the fingers and you can also eliminate the input device.
This will also lead to true virtual reality where entirely computer generated worlds could be projected into your eye as though you are actually there.
http://spectrum.ieee.org/biomedical/bionics/augmented-reality-in-a-contact-lens/0I'll be more impressed with news of cybernetic implants that act like the "cyber brains" from Ghost in the Shell. This is cool, but hardly impressive.
While optical computing might be better for something involving the eyes I would think that electronics would be the best way to interface with the nervous system.But thats just it, what we see is also just electirical impulses translated by our brain. So either way, electronics would be whats used for both. The only thing that would be necessary is having a set template for what impulse pattern means what. Theoritically its slightly different for every person, because no one person's brain is wired exactly the same.
While optical computing might be better for something involving the eyes I would think that electronics would be the best way to interface with the nervous system.
Well, not quite.
The use of photoreceptor proteins for controlling neural activity was conceived and demonstrated by Miesenböck (Zemelman 2002), who was also the first to control the behavior of an animal optogenetically (Lima 2005). The theoretical utility of selectively controlling precise neural activity (action potential) patterns within subtypes of cells in the brain (for example, using light to control optically-sensitized neurons) had been articulated by Francis Crick in his Kuffler Lectures at the University of California in San Diego (Crick 1999). The earliest genetically targeted photostimulation methods, put forward between 2002 and 2005, required multiple components to be introduced, beginning with the Miesenböck group's use of invertebrate opsins and the Kramer, Isacoff, and Miesenböck groups’ use of synthesized organic photoswitches or “caged” compounds that could interact with genetically-introduced ion channels (Zemelman 2002, Zemelman 2003, Banghart 2004, Lima 2005).
In 2005, the Deisseroth group ((Ed Boyden, Feng Zhang (2005)) at Stanford University brought the first single-component optogenetic system to neurobiology (beginning with channelrhodopsin, a single-component light-activated cation channel from unicellular algae), which allowed millisecond-scale temporal control in mammals, required only one gene to be expressed in order to work, and responded to visible-spectrum light with a chromophore retinal that was already present and supplied to the channelrhodopsin (ChR) by the vertebrate tissues. The surprising experimental utility of this single-component “microbial opsin” approach was quickly proven with many additional microbial opsin classes and in a variety of animal models ranging from behaving mammals to classical model organisms such as flies, worms, and zebrafish. The “optogenetic” terminology was coined in 2006 (Deisseroth 2006), and since 2005 hundreds of laboratories around the world have employed microbial opsins to study complex biological systems (references below).
Optogenetics is a technique for controlling the behavior of specific groups of nerve cells in the brain. Genetically engineered viruses carry light-triggered proteins into the brain of the animal; the viruses can be tailored to attach themselves to specific groups of cells.
The brain cells can then be activated by focused light; only those cells that are infected will respond to the light delivered into the brain by fiber optic strand.
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